The Chinese New Year reunion dinner does not have to be an assembly-line restaurant affair with draconian time limits. A growing number of takeaway options means you can enjoy your family get-together at home. BT Weekend helps you to choose your menu.
Ah Hoi's Kitchen
Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore 6831 4373
You have to dig deep to get every morsel of goodness in this pen cai, or what the restaurant calls the Fortune Big Bowl Feast. Some of the premium ingredients used include black moss, abalone, superior sea cucumber, fish maw, dried oyster, fresh prawns, along with roasted pork, chicken, yam, beancurd, lotus root, Chinese cabbage, gingko nut, golden mushroom, superior mushroom and conpoy broth. A medium sized pen cai is good for four to six persons and is priced at S$268.
You've heard of Buddha Jumps Over the Wall, but how about its baked version? This one from Xi Yan features a whole bird baked in a giant bun, which helps to keep the chicken warm.
Cut away the bread to get the succulent chicken which comes stuffed with sea cucumber, pork belly, mushroom, dried scallop and abalone. The Baked Buddha Jump Over the Wall is priced at S$128.
JING One Fullerton
This year, Jing is offering a three-course takeaway menu that is good for four to six persons. Start off with the salmon yusheng, followed by Jing's Abalone Dried Seafood Poon Choi. Each claypot comes packed with abalone, fish maw, fish glue, Japanese mushroom, dried oyster, prawns, lotus roots, braised tofu, chicken, black moss and sea asparagus. For some carbohydrates, there's the Supreme Fried Rice, wok-fried with Chinese sausage and diced mushrooms, wrapped in fresh lotus leaf. Priced at S$288. Get a 20 per cent discount if you order by Feb 17.
Oceans of Seafood
Oceans of Seafood's Vibrancy of Life yusheng comes with a Japanese twist. The yusheng, S$128, comes with a whole boiled rock lobster, salmon and amberjack sashimi. The amberjack is flown in from Tokyo's Tsukiji market, and the lobster is from the UK. The yusheng also has vegetables imported from Japan, such as the red and white radishes. Extra ingredients that are thrown in with a Japanese slant are edamame beans, and tobiko, or flying fish roe. For that extra luxe touch, the yusheng is garnished with gold flakes.
Instead of an overly sweet sauce, the dressing here is sesame with a hint of wasabi.
This seafood pen cai certainly lives up to its rather fancy name - 'Completeness & Overflowing Wealth' Whole Lobster & Seafood Treasures Pen-Cai. There is a whole lobster in there, plus 10-head abalones from Australia, a healthier-choice hormone-free whole chicken, hybrid grouper fillets, clams, Alaskan crab claws, king prawns, South African sea cucumber, fresh whole scallops, whole shiitake mushrooms, taro, tender wawa vegetables, and dried oysters.
Each pot is priced at S$328, and is good for six diners. Extra orders are priced at S$53 for each diner.
Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant
Sheraton Towers 6839 5623
New to the range of festive offerings by Li Bai Cantonese Restaurant is the stewed "eight treasures" duck which now comes with 5- head abalone in addition to its eight ingredients - lotus seed, Chinese mushroom, sea cucumber, salted egg, barley, chicken, pork, and chestnut ($388). Also available are traditional favourites like the Buddha Jumps over the Wall ($568 for 4 pax) with 2-head abalone, sea cucumber, fish maw, ginseng and dried scallops. One tip however, is to get a bottle of their in-house XO sauce ($28+ per bottle) made with scallops from Japan, Chinese ham, salted fish and shrimp - it'll be sure to add a nice kick to your meal.
If you're looking for a vegetarian option for your reunion dinner, try TungLok group's vegetarian take-home feast ($238 for 6 pax and $328 for 10 pax). It includes a vegetarian yu sheng, rice wrapped in lotus leaf, Thai-style deep-fried vegetarian fish, a TungLok nian gao, and a vegetarian pen cai featuring deep-fried beancurd skin rolls, chestnuts, vegetarian abalones, vegetarian lobster balls, braised tofu, taro, broccoli and bamboo fungus. Regular options are also available, in the form of their heavenly ($468 for 6 pax and $698 for 10 pax) and royal ($368 for 6 pax and $498 for 10 pax) take-home feasts. These include salmon yu sheng, signature TungLok treasure bowl (pen cai), fried glutinous rice with assorted preserved meat, herbal chicken, and one of TungLok's nian gao options.
The Organic Grocer
Eat healthy this Lunar New Year with The Organic Grocer's newest range of Organic Prosperity Boxes that come in two sizes - medium ($88) for three to four pax, and large ($150) for six to seven pax. Each box contains a medley of hotpot ingredients made up of organic produce and hormone-free meats, such as fresh organic green vegetables, Chinese cabbage, cherry tomatoes, and Swiss mushrooms, organic tofu, free roaming chicken, organic grass-fed beef, natural pork from the northwestern United States, and 300g of wild caught all natural scallops. A delivery fee of $15 will be waived with orders above $150.
Xin Cuisine Chinese Restaurant
Holiday Inn Singapore Atrium 6731 7173
Xin Cuisine's yusheng ($63 to $98) is a refreshing way to start the new year with its sweet passionfruit sauce to go with either Japanese prawns or salmon. For a more luxurious meal, order the imperial pen cai ($999 for 10 persons) and get premium items like a whole Australian 3-head abalone, bird's nest, deer tendon, goose web and Mexico sea cucumber. Also available is their crispy-skinned roasted suckling pig ($298) and an eight-treasures duck ($198) which is stuffed with ingredients like fish maw, whole abalone, sea cucumber, sea whelk.
New Majestic Hotel 6511 4718
Choose from three different yu sheng options at Majestic Restaurant with their Atlantic salmon lo hei ($58 or $88), ikan parang lo hei ($58 or $88), and snow pear and mixed vegetables lo hei ($48 and $68). Or if you'd prefer to keep things simple, order the Majestic deluxe treasures claypot takeaway set ($388 for 6 pax, $488 for 8 pax, or $588 for 10 pax) which comes with the Atlantic salmon lo hei, roasted pork, steamed rice with Chinese sausage and preserved meat, deep-fried nian gao with yam and sweet potato, and of course the Majestic deluxe treasures claypot that includes abalone, fish maw, sea cucumber, dried oyster and flower mushrooms.
This article was first published on Jan 31, 2015.
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